The Great Wall is a must see on a trip to China. Our trips to the Great Wall have no hidden shopping stops so we maximize your time on the wall. There are several sections to visit, but we recommend the Mutianyu section if you are taking a day trip, as this will take about half your day. If you want to do a serious hiking trip, then Jinshanling to Jinshanling East or Gubeikou to Jinshanling is recommended.
The Great Wall of China was built over more than two thousand years. Construction on the first section began between the 7th and 6th century BC, and the last work on the wall was done between the 14th and 17th centuries.
The wall was originally built of stone, wood, grass and earth. In the Ming Dynasty bricks were produced in kilns set up along the wall. The bricks were transported by men carrying them on their backs, donkeys, mules and even goats had a brick tied to their head before being driven up a mountain.
The Great Wall was key to protecting agriculture and resisting cavalry of the Huns and other warrior tribes from the north. The advantages of the enormous barrier diminished with the advancement of gunpowder and other weaponry.